Union match reports

Match report: Philadelphia Union 3-0 CF Monterrey

Photo: Marjorie Elzey

Philadelphia Union eased to a 3-0 win over a reserve-heavy CF Monterrey side on Saturday night at Subaru Park, securing third place in the 2023 Leagues Cup and a berth in the 2024 Concacaf Champions Cup.

Jim Curtin returned to the 4-4-2 formation for his side’s final Leagues Cup match, preferring Mikael Uhre, Quinn Sullivan, Jack McGlynn, and Olivier Mbaizo to Chris Donovan, Leon Flach, Damion Lowe, and Nathan Harriel.

The Union were on the board in less than 30 seconds through Jesus Bueno. Philly attacked the Monterrey defense in a wave, working it into the box. Uhre’s cross was flicked off the post by Daniel Gazdag, but Bueno crashed into the six-yard box and tapped the rebound into an empty net for his second goal of Leagues Cup.

The Boys in Blue doubled their advantage in first-half stoppage time, with Uhre the goalscorer. In transition, McGlynn hit a sumptuous weighted pass from the left behind the Monterrey line and right to the onrushing Uhre. The striker beat the keeper with a sliding first-time finish for only his second goal in his last 14 appearances.

Substitute Alejandro Bedoya made it 3-0 in the 69th minute. Recirculating the ball off a corner, Jakob Glesnes played a teasing ball into the box. The keeper saved the initial header, but Bedoya was waiting at the back post to smash in the rebound, scoring in a second consecutive match in his return from injury.

Summer signing Tai Baribo replaced Uhre in the final minute, making his competitive debut for the Union.

With Leagues Cup finally over, the Union return to regular season action next Saturday, August 26, when they travel down to D.C. to face United. The previous two games between the sides this season have been dour 0-0 draws. Kickoff from Audi Field is at 7:30 p.m.


Philadelphia Union 

Andre Blake, Kai Wagner, Jack Elliott, Jakob Glesnes, Olivier Mbaizo, Jesus Bueno (Alejandro Bedoya 65′), Jack McGlynn, Jose Martinez, Daniel Gazdag (Joaquin Torres 90′), Mikael Uhre (Tai Baribo 90+1′), Quinn Sullivan (Chris Donovan 65′)

Unused subs: Joe Bendik, Holden Trent, Nathan Harriel, Matt Real, Olwethu Makhanya, Leon Flach, Jeremy Rafanello

CF Monterrey

L. Cardenas, E. Gutierrez, V. Guzman, S. Vegas, D. Parra, J. Gonzalez (L. Romo 46′), K. Ortega (S. Canales 68′) V. Lopez (J. Rojas 68′), J. Cortizo, I. Fimbres (E. Carballo 46′), A. Avila (R. Funes Mori 75′)

Unused subs: E. Andrada, C. Ramos, H. Moreno, S. Medina, J. Gallardo, A. Morales, M. Meza

Scoring Summary

PHI: Jesus Bueno — 1′
PHI: Mikael Uhre — 45+2′ (Jack McGlynn)
PHI: Alejandro Bedoya — 69′

Discipline Summary

MTY: D. Parra — 9′ (foul)


  1. Sure, we shit the bed on Tuesday and this game was against a B team, but we took care of business, we looked pretty good doing it, we’re among the last 3 standing out of 47 and we made it to CCC, so I’m going to go with feeling good tonight.

    That said, I am baffled that once we went up 3-0 Jim did not make his final three subs at 70. I just don’t get it.

  2. What an insane debut from tai baribo

  3. First. Congrats for rallying and beating Rayados. Important to say that.
    But to see the lineup he sent out tonight as the exact lineup he should have sent out on Tuesday is tough to swallow. No argument and I mean none… validates the starting XI on Tuesday.
    Either way I’m glad this event is over. Can we play league games again please.

    • Eric Boyle says:


    • Deez Nuggs says:

      I literally shouted that sentiment in my basement and pounded my fist on the chair when they put the lineup on screen.

    • I am as angry as you for Tuesday’s lineup — and I was at the match — but what’s the alternative? That Jim learns nothing from his terrible mistake?? We took care of business in solid fashion for a CCC spot. That’s all you can ask for.

  4. Ale didn’t just “smash in the rebound”. 9 times out of 10 it’s rushed and it goes over the bar.
    He waited that half second

  5. Watching Nashville pressure Miami and they’re fumbling passes…what the fuck was Jim thinking. I’m going to park the bus with a 5-4-1. God I still detest what happened.

    • All week before the semi, he talked “Jimself” into being SCARED of Messi and his boyfriends. You could hear it in his interviews.

      Had Jim started his normal 11 instead of the “Fearful 11” our result against Miami would have looked like last night and this ‘Messimania’ would have been reduced.

      So tired of ‘pink’ in every headline.

      • What’s also great is the suckers who paid for Apple subscriptions have essentially financed Miami and Messi. There has to be some collusion going on. I’m not a lawyer but something just isn’t right? How can Miami snap their fingers and bring is those players? Sad to say but Messi, Alba and busquets are miles better than anyone the union have ever brought in. And all 3 at the same time….? Think we also witnessed why Blake is still in the MLS. When he’s bad he’s BAD.

  6. PhiliBear1872 says:

    Just watched the Philly game.
    Also watched the inter Vs Nashville game.

    There is a clear difference between the two and it’s stupidly funny.
    – why are teams allowed to buy clubs like this?
    – why are clubs allowed to pay the wages of clubs like this?

    I’m not sure. Miami bought those 3 players and won the competition (no surprise).

    What chance do we have against this lot?

  7. Decision Day will be the Union’s 49th game of 2023.
    Last season with only one extra from a first game US Open Cup loss they played 35 before starting the playoffs.
    14 extra games this year, people. They added only three players to their roster, and it says here that only one of them is likely to be around by 2024. There were reasons why other MLS clubs made all three available.
    The league does not need to increase roster size. MLS roster numbers compare to the big five leagues of Europe. But what does not compare is the quality of the benches.
    MLS will remain a poor relation playing average quality soccer until it does.

  8. John P. O'Donnell says:

    I’m surprise they won but with Monterrey not going all in seems like payback from the soccer gods for the Covid Eastern Conference final against NYCFC.
    Uhre scoring a goal is nice but it’s the same thing once again of him shooting at the goalie and getting the nutmeg. It seems he never shoots left or right of the goaltender.
    I myself was quite happy with this tournament and could care less about the advantage MLS had. Liga MX has been enjoying playing MLS teams during CCL right out of preseason for year so it’s about time they had to come into a tournament with a little adversity.
    Miami vs Nashville was quite entertaining and the goalie getting the winning penalty and turning around and saving the next one was a breakout moment for him.

  9. Overall I thought the Leagues Cup was just another MLS total money grab… so that’s the way we treated it too! 😉

    Now back to what’s really important… Hosting MLS Cup 2023 in Chester. Doop!

  10. … and thanks to the soccer Gods there were NO MAJOR INJURIES. Hard to discuss during the tournament, but man, every game that’s all I thought.

  11. Great win! Thrilled we’re in the champions league again.
    Glad coach came to his senses about formation.
    Where is Carranza? Anyone know why he was benched in the previous game and not in the line up yesterday?

  12. Gruncle Bob says:

    Some factoids about the line-ups, with all values from transfermarkt in euros.
    Monterrey started an entirely different line-up from the Nashville game. It included 4 U23 players, and 2 very good center backs, with a combined value of 10.0 mil. The total value of the line-up was 15.1 mil.
    Over the course of the match, they made 5 subs. 4 of those were high value starters (Romo, Canales, Rojas, Funes Mori) with a combined value of 26.5 mil. The other sub was a U23 player (Carballo). The value of subs out was 1.4 mil. Monterrey ended the match with 1 U23 player and 40.3 mil on the pitch. My conclusion is that they were embarrassed by the scoreline and really wanted at least 1 goal.
    For comparison, the U started with 33.3 mil, removed 12.3 mil and added 5.1 mil, with 26.1 mil at the end.

    • Andy Muenz says:

      I think Monterrey was treating the game like a friendly, looking to get a look at some potential future players as well as a few minutes training for some starters. When the game was over, the Monterrey fans who were sitting a few seats over said “good game” as they left and I replied that their starters will probably kick our butts in Champions Cup next year.

  13. It was very satisfying to see them take care of business. You can only play the team on the pitch facing you, and we needed to really win this game solidly, and we did.

    I dunno why people are griping about this tourney, BTW. I think it’s been quite fun (other than Jim & Andre sh***ing the bed against Miami). It’s way better than the Open Cup. Looking forward to next year’s version.

    • Shhhhh!!! Bite your tongue!!! The Bro/Rel and purist brigade will be out in full force with their pitchforks!!

    • Agree with this

    • Agreed. I love tournaments, and the new LC format with incentives is excellent. Look how it already got us a CCC slot. It’s also great playing and challenging Liga MX.
      . . .
      The USOC is our centurion FA Cup.
      The founder of Dewar’s whiskey founded the USOC for that purpose and soccer’s growth. Love that tournament too.
      . . .
      The new CCC format is also promising. We all know that’s our UEFA Champions League. It’s a BFD along with a FIFA Club WC spot, which is also expanding in 2025 to grow its relevance in Europe, and it will first be hosted in the US.
      . . .
      I also keep in mind that fortunes rise and fall. For the longest time, the USOC was our only shot at winning a trophy, a CCL slot, and cash prizes. Hard times will likely come again. Tournaments offer additional chances for glory.
      . . .
      Of course, I hate having a full drawer of silver and bronze medals without any gold, but it’s far better than a kick in the ass, and eventually we’ll hit gold with more tournament chances at it.

  14. MLS Cup – Supporter’s Shield – CC League – League’s Cup – Open Cup.
    Full slate for next year as well.

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